What bike would you guys recommend for someone who wants to get into XC/trailriding in the sub-$500 XC hardtail category? (maybe keep in mind that prices on bikes are also higher up in Canada, unfortunately)
I've been fretting about components, but I realized that as a beginner, I might as well ride whatever I get until it breaks, and take it as an opportunity to upgrade to something better when the time comes. So really what I'm wondering is what bikes have the best frames in the entry-mid category? I'm interested in a reasonable compromise between weight/strength, I guess, since I'm not especially heavy (160 lbs).